World Football

The Week in Quotes

Argentina's head coach Diego Maradona talks with Lionel Messi
© Getty Images

"I had the best Messi and nobody can tell me otherwise, because he was able to skip past up to five players. A phenomenon. But he had an issue with free-kicks. When we finished every training session we kept Leo behind so he could practice, and he started to hit the post. I didn't teach him how to take a free-kick. Then he asked me how I was able to score. [Maradona described his advice as to "simply hit it in the middle]. And he replied, 'But I hit it in the middle and the ball goes this way or that way', and I told him, 'Don't worry, you're going to make it'. Now he just can't miss."
Diego Maradona says he helped Lionel Messi improve his free-kick technique

Cameroon and FIFA Legend Samuel Eto'o announces his retirement from football

"I’ve always said that I don’t have any issue with him. We might not be friends because we’ve never shared a dressing room together but I always see him at award shows and there’s no problem. We actually spoke with each other for quite a long time at the most recent show. I don’t know if there will be a dinner because I don’t know if our paths will cross for obvious reasons, each one of us has our own life and our own commitments. But obviously I would accept the invitation."
Messi speaks about his relationship with fellow The Best FIFA Men's Player finalist Cristiano Ronaldo in an exclusive interview with SPORT

"He is a phenomenon, someone who only thinks about winning and doing it more and more and better. That is why I am not surprised at all what he does. When he is 50 years old he will be at home and FIFA will invite him to a game of legends. He will play the game and score a goal. I am sure it will be like that."
Jose Mourinho on Cristiano Ronaldo, speaking with Portuguese TV channel 11

Sunil Chhetri reacts to India's goalless draw in Qatar during FIFA World Cup™ qualifying

"We were playing the host country and it was all out, all or nothing. One of the craziest games I’ve been a part of. It’s hard to put into words."
Mallory Pugh speaks about her Women's World Cup memories in an exclusive interview with

"It's impossible to play against him or you do a foul. In the past he was very speedy but the final ball or shot was not so good. It is now incredible. He's learned a lot with Guardiola. He's one of the best players in the world now."
Kosovo coach Bernard Challandes on Raheem Sterling

“I actually never thought she was that good, anyway (laughing)!"
Bev Lowe, mother of Ali Riley, speaking in the last of FIFA's six-part Sheroes series - watch the full video to get the full story

Serge Gnabry jokes with team-mate Kai Havertz after Germany's 2-0 win against Northern Ireland in UEFA EURO 2020 qualifying

"There's no LeBron James playing soccer. All respect to the men that we have in the United States, they're good but they're not great. They're not superstars. There is nobody as marketable or even close to James and we need that. We need to let guys know that there's another way out besides basketball and (American) football."
Accomplished hip-hop photographer Mel D. Cole, who recently collaborated with Roma and Black Arrow FC on a project, speaks with CNN Sport

"I watch [England] with excitement and happiness when they are winning. You look at our team ten years ago and arguably we had the best group of players in world football. Rio Ferdinand, John Terry, Ashley Cole, [Steven] Gerrard, [Paul] Scholes, [Frank] Lampard, [David] Beckham, myself, Michael Owen - our team then, if we had a Guardiola with that group of players, we'd have won everything, no doubt about it."
Wayne Rooney chats with Men in Blazers' Roger Bennett on The Wayne Rooney Podcast

“What a pleasure it was to play alongside N’Golo! He is an adorable guy alongside being a fantastic footballer: when we lost the ball, wherever that happened on the pitch, boom, he would appear and win it back for us. In training, it was so easy for him that I was convinced that he intentionally gave the ball away sometimes just to enjoy winning it back again. One day he said to us that he was seriously considering running to the training centre each day, which came from the fact that he would always add a little running session for himself. In the moment, we were all a bit taken aback and convinced him not to. In any case, each time that we saw him arrive at training with his Mini Cooper, we were reassured.”
Leicester City forward Jamie Vardy talks about former team-mate and World Cup winner N'Golo Kante

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